LA Rams Draft: Deep dive analysis into 11 top rookie roster additions
With the 235th pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, the LA Rams added help for their pass rush with 6-foot-2 239-pound outside linebacker Daniel Hardy out of Montana State.
What does the team need for this position?
The LA Rams entered the draft needing basic and fundamental quarterback pressure off the edge. The Rams have sufficient numbers to generate a primary rotation for the defense. But beyond the top four players, the team is counting on numbers to compete for playing time. The Rams must defend dual-threat quarterbacks, so players who can contain from the outside and get to the quarterback are critical for the success of the defense.
What does this rookie deliver?
A bit like 2021 OLB Chris Garrett, Daniel Hardy is another small school athletic freak who is raw in technique but monstrous on his upside. He has all of the right athleticism to be a solid NFL contributor. He is a bit on the raw side, but once he masters an arsenal of NFL pass-rush techniques, he could prove to be a monster off the edge.
He may be buried on the depth chart early. But his skillsets should allow him to compete on special teams and defense.
Who else was available?
LA Rams draft Daniel Hardy: Here are 2 prospects left on the board
Instant reaction: Hardy has gotten a great deal of positive buzz so far. I see Hardy as a special teams contributor out of the gate, and eventually learn and earn a role as an outside linebacker for this defense.
Draft Grade: C+. The need for the outside linebacker position felt more significant to me than the Rams front office seemed to hold for the position. Time will tell.